Who cares to define
What chemistry this is?
There’s a certain subtlety to subterfuge.
Jacqui Franco smokes cigarettes astride the dumpster behind the crime lab, and flicks her ashes carelessly onto the asphalt. They tumble, turn, catch in the breeze, and land at her feet, gray flecks against black.
David Hodges watches this, and says nothing.
He’s presented her with the dangers of smoking before. David Phillips has gratuitously photographed blackened, deteriorated lungs post mortem and oh-so-innocently e-mailed the digital prints to Jacqui from an anonymous e-mail account Archie set up. Henry has plastered toxicology reports to the insides of her locker and highlighted the relevant information. Ronnie has scolded loudly in his “you made Dad mad” tone of voice.
Jacqui still smokes cigarettes astride the dumpster behind the crime lab.
“You could quit,” he notes as she pulls another drag, the embered end glowing red-orange in the shadow of the dumpster. He feels like a big game hunter, crouched behind a bush and waiting for his prey.
“Are you actually suggesting concern for another human being?” she asks, and arches a recently-plucked eyebrow.
He rolls his eyes. “I just don’t want you hacking up a lung onto your print films, thanks,” he replies, and crosses his arms over his chest. “Grissom gets all antsy when the words ‘compromised’ and ‘evidence’ are used in the same sentence.”
She snorts. “Don’t think I don’t know that.”
“Me, doubt the intelligence of another person? Strange, I know.”
“Some friend you are.” Jacqui smiles sardonically and presses the filter to her lips again.
It’s a tease – she’s a tease – and David’s stomach turns as she flicks more ashes onto asphalt. Honesty, he’s learned, is rarely the best policy; as Jacqui’s favorite television doctor claims, everybody lies, and David Hodges, despite his best attempts to the contrary, is a member of the “everybody” demographic. As long as Jim Brass isn’t hunkered down in a metal chair across from him, elbows on the table and lips bent into that nigh-permanent frown of his, David is alright with lying.
The trick to lying through your teeth is to never get caught.
“I do try,” he informs her after a beat, and she rolls her eyes. “Took years of practice to become the kind of friend no one actually wants.”
For a split-second, there is genuine sympathy and sweetness in Jacqui’s eyes. Then, it flits away, and she stubs out her cigarette on the rim of the dumpster. “If it bothers you so much,” she notes, “you could stop coming on cigarette breaks with me.”
David just shrugs – no smile, not about this – and shakes his head. “And interact with Sanders?” he lies. “Not a chance.”
[ How little it matters - how little we know ]